Your messages.dat too big? Here is the solution

You can make backup of your keys and messages, delete the database (shut down Bitmessage before to do this!) and next time you run Bitmessage, it will recreate new database.

My old messages.dat was 678M. After I deleted it, the size of the new messages.dat is 25M.

I just moved the folder .config/PyBitmessage to PyBitmessage-old-backup, made new .config/PyBitmessage and copied keys.dat to the new folder. If I want to read my old messages, I can just swap the folders.

Discussion on Reddit.

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